Longtime community volunteer Patti Rasmussen has been named Woman Of the Year of the 38th District by Assemblyman Cameron Smyth.
She describes herself as “multifaceted” and enjoys lending her talents to a variety of causes.
“I like doing good stuff in my community,” she said. “And I usually find myself on the side of the underdog, but that’s OK. The only thing is that it’s awkward to be named to this because I’m never alone. Of all the things I’ve done, I’ve always had a partner in crime.”
Although she’s more comfortable behind the scenes, the fact that she was nominated by Smyth makes this time in the spotlight somewhat comfortable.
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“I am so honored to receive this recognition from Cameron,” she said. “I’ve known Cameron and his family for a long time and it’s quite special.”
Rasmussen’s charitable work in the community was one of the reasons Smyth named her for the honor, another was her long-term dedication to improving the area’s quality of life.
“I think Patti has spent a lifetime serving Santa Clarita, whether it was through the schools or the Senior Center or nonprofits and I think this is a nice way to thank her, not just for her work this year, but her work over the last 20 years,” Smyth said.
On March 21, Rasmussen will travel to Sacramento for a ceremony in the Assembly and a reception hosted by Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom. Smyth said that each district honors one woman, who receive resolutions and have their bios read from the podium.
“It’s a really nice thing,” he added.
Patti and her husband Charlie have raised four boys. Along the way, they added two daughters-in-law and just recently, a grandson to the mix.
While raising the boys, Patti served as PTA president, Site Council Chair and Cub Scout Leader. She also co-founded the non-profit Theatre Arts for Children that raised funds for the historical auditorium at Newhall Elementary School. For several years, Patti co-chaired the annual Country Faire in Newhall Park. She recently chaired the Senior Center’s annual Celebrity Waiter event.
She has served on the SCV Press Club, has been a board member of the Santa Clarita Valley Historical Society, and is a founding member of the Santa Clarita Valley Senior Center Foundation, currently serving as immediate past president.
A resident of the Santa Clarita Valley since 1977, Rasmussen is a freelance writer and former reporter for The Signal newspaper, where she covered the education scene. She won several awards for her writing, including the California Teachers Association John Swett Award for a feature story and another for continuous coverage of Educational Issues. Since leaving the paper, she has been a contributor to local magazines and KHTS’s website, hometownstation.com.